When the tourist industry really set off many moons ago, with the groundbreaking introduction of commercial aviation, the world was suddenly opened up to everybody.
As temperatures plummeted in the winter months and school vacation time grew longer, tourists would pick the place that could guarantee them that picturesque, postcard view of white sandy beaches and turquoise, colored waters.
For many Americans, the obvious choice was the Mexican Caribbean due to its close proximity to the U.S. and offering of the cookie-cutter beach experience.
Anything beyond that, say the exploration of ancient Mayan worlds, was left to people like Indiana Jones and was not for the everyday tourist.
That has all changed, however, as the Mexican Caribbean cements itself as the number one destination for the growing tourist trend, which is archaeological tourism, and more specifically, exploring Mayan worlds.
With ancient Mayan sites dotted all over the region and now being connected more than ever with the introduction of the new Maya train, as well as being hugely promoted by local tourism boards, people are flocking to these destinations to catch a glimpse of the spectacular ruins.
@mwangohwalima Chichen Itza, Mexico! @#foryoupage #mexico #chichenitza #fyp ♬ Aesthetic – Tollan Kim
The success is so great that the surrounding countries in Central America are keen to emulate it in the hopes of bringing tourists to their stunning destinations also.
Local authorities have been doing everything in their power this year to expand and reopen more unexplored territories linked to the ancient sites that date back thousands of years ago, and it has clearly worked, with the Mexican Caribbean experiencing a boom like never before in the tourism sector.
@vblackandwhite ~ 7 Tips for your visit to Tulum Mayan Ruins! 1) Wear tennis or confortable shoes! – From the parking to the park entrance is around a 10-20 minute walk. Then inside the park there is only one seating area at the end so you will be standing and walking all the time during your visit. You will be walking on grass and gravel so make sure to wear confortable shoes! 2) Put on sunblock, light clothes, sunglasses, hats, everything! – There is basically no place for you to hide from de sun and it gets really really hot! 3) Bring water! – You can bring your bottle water and I highly recommend this! We had 4 bottles of water and we drank it all! Immediately after ending the tour we went and bought some more! So trust me, bring water to keep you hydrated! 4) Expect a lot of people! – There are a lot of tours at the sane time so expect a lot of people. We took a cruise tour and the tour guy gave us background information and history of the ruins. 5) Book in advance! -Since we were on a pre paid On Shore Excursion from the cruise our tour guy already had the parks tickets so we skipped a 20 minute line. 6) Bathrooms are on the main entrance. – These are the only bathrooms on site so make sure that if you have to go, go at the entrance! 7) Duration ~ Less than 3 hours – It depends if you take a tour or not but in less than three hours you get to see everything. Overall this is a kid friendly and family friendly activity to do during your visit to Mexico. We enjoyed it a lot! Remember to like, share and save this for your next visit to Tulum! ___ ~ V. 🖤 #vblackandwhite8 #lifeinblackandwhite #blackandwhite #mexico #kidsfriendlyvacation #familyvacation #familyholidayvacation #kidfriendly #tulummexico #tulummayanruins #tulummexico #tulummexico🇲🇽 #onshoreexcursions #royalcaribbeancruise #marineroftheseas #mexicotulumadventures #tulummayanruins #visitmexico #visitmexico🇲🇽 #tulummexico #mexicotourism #mexicotours #elcastillo #elcastillomayantemple #mayanruinsmexico #cruiseaddict #cruiselover #cruisingthroughlifeoneportatatime ♬ original sound
What would have been previously more challenging places to reach from major tourist destinations like Cancun and Tulum are now being connected easier than ever via the Maya train, which expects to open up the entire region for tourists and locals alike to experience never-before-seen archeological and environmental zones.
So, if you are completely new to this and want to tap into your inner Indiana Jones, here is where to start…
Chichén Itzá, Cancun
The number one most visited site in the entire region is Chichén Itzá, which is most probable because of its close proximity to the most popular destination in the region, Cancun.
Spanning over a 1,000-year history time period and dating back somewhere like 600 A.D., this breathtaking site is host to temples, pillars, and pyramids that were technically and architecturally advanced for its time.
The ancient pyramid El Castillo is the tallest structure, with a Great Ball Court, the Osario Pyramid, and the Temple of the Warriors as other notable areas to visit.
Chichen Viejo is another neighboring site that has just been reopened this year after decades of being closed to the public and is supposedly a must-see!
Tulum Ruins, Tulum
Another highly visited area for archeological tourism is Tulum, home to its sublime ruins that sit atop its seaside cliffs, overlooking the turquoise ocean below.
Though smaller in size than Chichén Itzá, these ruins paint an incredible picture of life thousands of years ago, where it would have served as an important port town in the Caribbean, with Columbian tradesmen arriving in their numbers to see the spectacular structures on its shoreline.
The most photographed structure is the Temple del Dios de Vento, a temple named after a descending god above the building’s door.
The image is fairly iconic during the spring equinox, when a ray of sunlight shines through the temple and matches perfectly underneath the image, giving a heavenly, spiritual feel to the place.
Surrounded by a couple of beaches, this is one of the few ancient Mayan sites where you can take a dip in the ocean to cool off once you have enjoyed touring the structures long enough.
If you are looking for less well-known areas and want to skip the overcrowding and busyness of the above-mentioned archeological sites, hop on the Maya Train once it is fully functional and go further afield to somewhere like Sayil, in Campeche.
A less-known region of the Mexican Caribbean but one that is expected to grow in popularity with the new train route, Campeche is home to Sayil, a seminal Mayan settlement that is host to palaces and temples that will blow your mind!
Once again, the advanced architecture of this site will capture your imagination, with its intricate system of collecting water being majorly important to its agricultural success thousands of years ago.
This site, plus countless more, is finally being connected and opened to the world in the hopes of continuing this popular trend for tourists via the billion-dollar Maya Train project.
It seems as though budding historians will be flocking far and wide to catch a glimpse!
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